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That’s not vegan

Wow, you guys, I am simply amazed at how hard it is to eat vegan-ly. I haven’t gone full blown yet but I have spent the past couple of days observing the ingredients in some of the things I eat and hardly anything is vegan! It’s amazing what sneaks into some products.

Breakfast this morning was my very last Holey Donut, Banana Cream Pie. I remember not caring much for this one the first time around but I must’ve heated it right this time because the banana insides were so creamy and delicious. Unfortunately, as I read on their website, this filling has HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP. Bad, bad, bad.

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On the side I had a Morningstar Farms sausage patty (so not vegan, contains lots of milk ingredients) and some strawberries.

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Sadly, after two strawberries, they just didn’t taste good so I threw the rest away 😦 I don’t know if it was just that it didn’t go with what I was eating, if they were too sweet (and I’m not used to it anymore), or what. Sad though.

My walk this morning was great though. The 15 minutes really starts to fly by when you make it a habit. When I got back I munched on these, which Kashi so graciously sent me last week 🙂

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These were so good! Not vegan but good. Haha. They reminded me of a cereal I’d had before but I couldn’t quite place it. Anyone know? I want to say Honeycombs or something like that, but I never ate those so that can’t be it. Thanks Kashi!

I would probably buy these myself depending on how far I take this vegan thing. Obviously not too far yet 😉

For lunch, I had a “let’s use up what’s in the fridge” salad of romaine lettuce, cucumbers and pinto beans. Doesn’t sound like much but it tasted good and held me quite a while too.

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On my afternoon walk, I remembered this picture I took last week of an albino squirrel on campus. They are actually pretty common (on campus) but I hadn’t seen one in a while and I know a lot of you haven’t so I tried to get a good pic with my camera phone!

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He was closer to me but he kept running away from the crazy lady with the phone, haha.

For my snack, I had some more almonds.

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Then I went to a meeting, left work and hit the gym for a quick 30 minute workout. I did upper body (chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps) weights, abs, and legs getting in two sets of every exercise. It was quick and simple but I definitely felt it when I was leaving!

Dinner was another “throw together what’s left in the fridge” meal…can you tell it’s almost grocery shopping day, and we’re going out of town next weekend!

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This is leftover barley, mixed stir fry veggies, spaghetti sauce and Morningstar Farms veggie crumbles (the only non-vegan ingredient). I’ve made a dish similar to this before and it looks and sounds disgusting to some, but it’s so good.

I’ve successfully used up a lot of stuff in our freezer and refrigerator, yay!

After dinner had settled, I met my friend Candy for a walk at the park. It is such a cool, cloudy evening, perfect walking weather. We went three times around the track which is 3 miles, in about 45 minutes!

When I got home, I was thinking of “desserts” but what I really wanted was a “snack” and my body was telling me banana and PB, so I listened and put down the dark chocolate.

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I’m 110% satisfied and content. It’s amazing what listening to your body does and giving it what it really wants and not what you think you should be having. I wish I could do this every time, but I will cherish this one 😉

I also drank two big ol’ glasses of water because this girl was thirsty!

Time to start settling down for the night. Hooray, tomorrow is Friday and the looong weekend can begin. Have a good one everybody!

Last day of the old mentality

Hey guys! Hope you saw my previous post on my possible vegan adventure. I’ve pretty much made up my mind that I at least want to try making a few substitutions and trying some new recipes if nothing else. No matter what though, I want it to be an adventure and learning experience 🙂

Breakfast this morning found me once again using up some stuff lurking in the freezer (to make room for more yummy foods):

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On the left is a Morningstar Farms “sausage” patty and on the right is a Holey Donut in raspberry fudge 🙂

Holey Donuts sent me a few samples to review for the blog a while back and I have covered most of them now. Once the box is empty (one more to go) I will do a wrap up of the entire experience, including Josh’s opinions as well!

Close up!

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Believe it or not this breakfast held me better than I expected. But when it was time for a snack, my hunger was pretty intense so I went for the bigger of my two snacks: greek yogurt with peanut butter!

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It was during this snack that I started having the Vegan Revelation.

Before I ate that though, I went for a 15 minute walk. A couple of hours afterwards, I went to the gym and did a nice strength and weight training routine with my bud Farrah. My arms were tired at the end of our session so I know I did some good work 🙂

For lunch (that snack held me for 3 hours!) I created a tuna salad but spiced it up a bit. I’ve seen paprika used on tuna at restaurants I’ve been to before (like McAlister’s Deli) so I thought I’d give it a try from home.

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This was such a good idea! I also used Smart Balance mayo mixed in with the tuna. The salad contained romaine lettuce, cucumbers and a tiny bit of raspberry vinaigrette dressing. It was delicious!

I went for another 15 minute walk on my break and I think this is an amazing thing to do on nice fall days. I’m so looking forward to the new season. I usually prefer summer but something about the fall is making me so happy. Pumpkin stuff, light sweaters, Halloween…the list goes on.

For a snack, I had some cheese (the last one) and fruity tea.

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When I left work, I thought I was needing another snack but as it turns out I was thirsty. I drink water all day long but for some reason after so much of that, I really need something with some flavor to really quench the thirst and taste buds. Today I opted for this again…

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Worked like a charm. I love this flavor. I’m still not 100% sold on Pure Via. What do you guys think? Is there such a thing as an all natural 0 calorie sweetener?

While I was waiting for my ride, I stumbled upon this article in my Health magazine called Stuff That Messes With Your Hormones.

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Hormones are a sensitive issue for me since I have struggled with abnormal and irregular menstrual cycles my entire womanhood. It got even worse when I lost all my weight and trained for a mini-marathon. Luckily the past several months, my cycles seemed to have regulated for the most part but they are still not the 28-day norm.

Anyway, for that reason alone, it always catches my eye when I see information about what can affect hormones in our bodies. This article brought a few things to my attention that I hope to address soon.

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1. Buy a new filter – We used to use a pitcher with a filter for our water when we first got married but we sort of got lazy and out of the habit. Also, our cities tap water is supposedly the best in the country. But according to this article, that may not be enough.

2. Check cleaners, soaps, lotions and cosmetics – I recently purchased a new cleaner for the kitchen that is more environmentally friendly. I also was inspired by Angela and other bloggers who have taken to safer cosmetics and skin care products. I’m going to start checking the products I already have, use what I can and then gradually replace them with safer alternatives.

3. Toss the plastic – I was aware that BPA was in lots of water bottles and I threw out the ones I had and replaced them with a stainless steel container. But I still own a ton of plastic for food storage and I often reheat things in those containers. I knew it wasn’t a great idea but I didn’t realize putting these plastic containers in the microwave AND dishwasher could cause this harmful ingredient to leach out. I don’t know how easy it will be, but I hope to find alternatives to these containers or at least remember to hand wash them and not use them to reheat things.

4. Meat goes bye-bye – This was not a surprise to me. We all know that unless we get meat from a source that we know does not use hormones on their animals, chances are we are ingesting more than we care to when we eat that hamburger or piece of chicken. Rather that spend a lot of time or money finding safer meat, I would prefer to just avoid it altogether. See my post on veganism.

Anyway, back to eats!

For dinner, I threw together a combination of barley, pinto beans, and mixed veggies topped with Sriracha.

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It tasted even better than it looks! I used 1/2 cup of barley, 1/2 cup of beans and 1 cup of veggies.

Here’s the barley. I get this for really cheap at Kroger and it lasts forever!

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For dessert, I finished off the last few Dove dark chocolates. As I’ve done research (including lots of “Is (fill in the food) vegan?” searches on Google) I’ve found that I’m going to have to step up my quality of chocolate if I want it to fit into this experiment.

Did you know…even though chocolate itself comes from a cocoa tree, the more processed a chocolate product is, the more added ingredients it contains including milk and milk fats (among other artificial ingredients). Here’s a good guide to vegan chocolate.

Still a good message though…

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“Keep believing in yourself and your special dreams.”

I’m off to go brainstorm my special dreams now. Hope you do the same.

Good night!

Another donut?!

Okay, so you are going to be seeing me eat a lot of donuts on here now that I have a sample of Holey Donuts to review!

This morning, I had another green monster (I put ice in the blender which made it almost double in size!) with a new donut to try…Raspberry Fudge 🙂

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This donut is a little more calorie-dense because it is a whole donut with raspberry filling inside, but man is it good! I especially loved the crumbs and drizzled chocolate sauce on the outside.

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I can say, in all honesty, that after having healthy gourmet donuts, I will not eat another kind! I wasn’t a big donut eater to begin with, especially since I started my healthy lifestyle in 2007, but I’m even less of one now, as far as your regular crappy donuts go.

Here are the stats for the raspberry fudge donut (far left):

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I have lots more to try but I think I’ll take a couple days off just so I don’t go into donut overload and subsequent burnout. They are in the freezer and should hold up for a while, ha ha.

Today, I am running 2 miles easy to prepare for my last 5K of the season, which is tomorrow!

I’m really excited and just hope that the weather is not too unbearable at 8 a.m. tomorrow. We’re expecting a heat index of over 100 degrees today, so I am running my 2 miles early, but the humidity is already bad out there.

That is why the racing season is wrapping up for me now (most likely until at least September). I’m going to continue to run 1-2 times a week just to keep it up and not “lose” it this time, but my focus is going to be more on strength training, yoga and other forms of cardio (that can be done indoors)!

I’m really excited for tomorrow and also what the future holds…

Happy Friday!

Yes, I ate a donut

The black bean burgers I made for my potluck dinner last night turned out great! Sadly, my camera batteries died earlier in the day so I do not have a single picture of them 😦

However, you can view the recipe for yourself here: Homemade Black Bean Veggie Burgers

I followed the recipe to a T and they came out great. It made me feel like I was eating something so much healthier than a frozen preservative-filled veggie patty. We served them with avocado, which has now become one of my favorite veggie burger toppings 😉 On the side we had sweet potato fries, a salad (with feta, nuts and raisins), and for dessert: bananas, blackberries and ff vanilla yogurt. It was a great night!

This morning, I knew I was having a green monster, but since I still have yet to purchase any protein powder, I always have to eat something with mine in order to stay full for a longer period of time.

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Luckily, I had received a shipment from Holey Donuts yesterday…a Ultra Low Fat Gourmet donut company! I’m sure most of you have heard of them by now on the blogs, but for my readers who haven’t…oh my gosh!

I’m not a big donut eater, mostly because they hurt my teeth and my stomach with their sugariness and lack of nutrients, but “gourmet” is my new favorite word, so I thought I would give these a shot and let Josh try some too since he’s a big donut fan and could benefit from trying a healthier version.

For dessert last night, Josh tried the donut holes and he said they were “pretty good.” He’s not a man of many words. But he’s looking forward to trying some more of our stash soon.

This morning with my green monster, I decided to try the Low Fat Pink Velvet Strawberry Frosted which is apparently a Valentine’s Day special of theirs.

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Oh my goodness! This reminded me of my beloved strawberry cupcakes that I request for my birthday every year 🙂 This is what donuts are supposed to taste like. After 15 seconds in the microwave, this donut was soft but not falling apart and the icing was melted but not dripping off the side.

Check out these nutritionals:

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I have never felt so good about eating a donut before!

Holey Donuts, I think you have created a monster, ha ha. Can’t wait to try more of my samples and write an official review for you guys soon. Please check out the website in the mean time!

Happy Thursday 🙂